How to Grow a Cucumber in a Bottle
If you enjoy novelties, growing a cucumber in a bottle is just the thing for you. With a little work and patience, you can grow a full sized cucumber in a bottle that can't be removed without breaking the bottle. Although there is no magic involved in this old timer's trick - it does make an interesting conversation piece.
- Select a bottle with a small mouth for the best effect. Wash and dry the bottle and head on out to the garden.
- Slip a tiny cucumber into the bottle being careful not to damage the vine. You may wish to add a strip of tape to prevent the cucumber from slipping out, but use caution not to get the tape on either the cucumber or the vine.
- Cover the bottle with vines to shade it from direct sunlight, otherwise the interior of the bottle will heat up and cook your cucumber.
- Check the cucumber daily and tuck it back into the bottle if it begins to slide out. Don't worry, within a few days your cucumber won't be able to fit through the mouth of the bottle.
- Water your cucumber plant every few days to keep the soil evenly moist - using care not to get water in the bottle. If the bottle fills with water, you cucumber will rot. Cucumber plants need plenty of water when producing fruit.
- Monitor the growth of the cucumber carefully to make sure it doesn't get overly ripe. Your goal is to grow a crisp green cucumber - not a yellow one. Cucumbers grow quickly and yours should be ready for harvesting in 7 to 10 days.
- Cut the cucumber from the vine when it reaches the desired size. The cucumber will slip further inside the bottle leaving your visitors wondering how it got there.
- You can pickle your cucumber, if preferred, by following your favorite pickle recipe and processing the sealed bottle in a boiling water bath. Pickled cucumbers can be kept as a showpiece for years - whereas a fresh cucumber will last a few days.